Movie: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

After a hectic day in the office I decided to go and see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. It was playing at the Ritzy Cinema in Brixton, which is a grand old theatre that is a feature on the high street which has great seats and a good sound system... No trip to Brixton is complete without a visit to the cinema (although try and get to see a film in the main cinema and not in the extended bit)...

As for the movie, I recently had a discussion with a Gene Wilder devotee who was passionately arguing that nobody could come near his comic genius. I thought that was all very well but that first movie had all those dreadful songs and departed from the book in several key places. Besides, I thought Johnny Depp would make this far more interesting and he did by becoming Michael Jackson. There is a scene towards the end where Wonka tries to lure Charlie away from his family into his big glass elevator so they could live together - and alone - which surely could have been lifted straight from a Martin Bashir documentary.

To be fair on the film and not just take the fashionable reading of the day, it was very entertaining. There are a few smart updates to the original story as well (although I am not sure why Mike TeeVee's father replaces his mother... The gender balance seems all wrong there)... Roald Dahl's text remains for the Oompa Loompa songs, and they seem a lot more fun than the last time I recalled them too. All told a not particularly subtle at points (there is this heavy handed aside into Wonkas upbringing), overall it was fun... And cruel... Squirrels attacking a girl from Buckinghamshire is surely something anyone in their right mind will want to pay to see!

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